April 5

This wouldn’t happen under a republic

According to Peter Lloyd, on the  ABC, 5 April, 2006, Thailand’s Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra says he is stepping down after weeks of opposition led protests and their boycott of the recent elections. He was accused of corruption and abuse of power. He will remain caretaker Prime Minister until a successor is chosen.



In the late afternoon, Mr. Thaksin went by helicopter to a southern Thai palace for an audience with The King, Bhumipol Adelyadej. On returning to Bangkok, Mr.Thaksin announced the decision in a nationally televised address. 


He said he is stepping aside out of respect for the King, who has reigned for almost 60 years.


This would not happen in a republic. I remember years ago, after serious disturbances in Bangkok, The King summoned the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition to an audience which resolved the issue. The broadcasts showed the two politicians approaching The King on their knees. I thought at the time that this practice should be introduced at Yarralumla, and our state government houses, always  with the TV cameras present. In a monarchy, the politicians should be reminded, as the Roman generals were during their triumph, that they are mortal, and that there is someone above them.  




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